France: The Dark Years, 1940-1944 (Modern World) Review

France: The Dark Years, 1940-1944 (Modern World)
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France: The Dark Years, 1940-1944 (Modern World) ReviewIn other readings of World War II, I had always felt I did not have a solid grounding in the history of Vichy France. I have been greatly intrigued for some time as to how a country like France could have collaborated to such a degree.This gap in knowledge, I hoped, could be filled by a general treatise on the subject. Having reviewed several books on Vichy France I chose 'France- The Dark Years, 1940-1944' as the one work upon which I would rely.
While I did admire the scope of the work, and have no argument that this book may be called the latest definitive source, be warned that this book is not written for those who do not have a working knowledge on the subject. The author does not spend time on set-up: the reader is presumed to know of not only the leading political figures in France during the 1930's-40's, but also those of greater obscurity. The list goes on with the presumptions of the author- we are supposed to know about newspapers of the era (of which there were many), political parties, both major and insignificant, and the names of resistance groups.
Again, this would not be critical if I had the requisite knowledge of the politics and society of France during this era, of which I do know some. But this book is written for the doctoral level student of this era in history, not for those seeking a more general overview.France: The Dark Years, 1940-1944 (Modern World) Overview

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